My son has a Barbie and I’m ok with that

When my wife told me she wanted to take Mikey to the store to pick out a Barbie I said, “No! I will not allow you to turn my son gay by allowing him to play with dolls! Get the boy a truck with flames and shit!” as I ate my steak and sipped my bud light. SIKE! I was actually really ok with it. Not because of some progressive semi-political agenda or belief that he should explore his feminine side, but because it just isn’t a big deal to me. Those of you who know me can confirm that I am a pretty conservative guy, but this issue is something I have put a lot of thought into. (more…)

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New Stuff

Life has been pretty crazy since October. We bought a new house and, with the help of family, we did a lot of work to it. I don’t think I want to do a renovation on my own ever again!We moved in right before Christmas and we got to spend Christmas morning around the tree in our new home. It was awesome!
Mikey is doing very good with the change. The only rough spot for him is that he misses the heck out of Grandma and Papa. Luckily we are down the street so Papa can walk over to visit whenever he wants.
Well, this was a short one cuz I’m still super busy with work, and we are kinda still moving, but I hope to be posting frequently again soon. Have a great one and remember, play more games!

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Home Sweet Home – We Are Buying A House

At the beginning of the year my wife and I decided to sell our home in order to pay off debts we had accumulated. It was a hard decision but we just couldn’t keep going the way we were so something had to change. We sold the house, payed off the debt, and moved in with my parents to save up a down payment for our next place.

Well, less than a year later the time has come! With the help of our friend and Realtor, Roy, we found a great place near our family with plenty of room for us. We are still in the process of doing all of the inspections, but so far everything looks good.

Obviously we will have to do some work before we can move in. Things like painting, carpet, and other fixes that come up. But we are hoping to be moved in before Thanksgiving.

Buying a house can be a stressful thing. This is my second time and I still found that I was getting stressed about the same things I did the first time around. Not to mention that I have my wife’s input to consider this time so it is not just me making these decisions. After a few communication hiccups, we learned a few new things that I am grateful for. The main one being that we have to really talk through every step of this to make sure the other person doesn’t feel like they are being excluded from the process.

Stay tuned for more news on the house and hopefully some pictures soon.

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Toddler Park Review: Cottage Park

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Toddler parks do exist!

Believe it or not, there are toddler parks in the Sacramento area. Some are better than others but they all have good and bad things about them.

Finding a good park to take a toddler is a pretty big challenge, especially if your little guy doesn’t walk yet or isn’t very steady. My goal with these reviews is to provide a resources for parents to find parks and free entertainment options for their little ones in the Sacramento, CA area. If you have any suggestions for parks or other places you have visited please leave a comment.

Cottage Park

Location:

The Good:

  • The entire toddler park is gated off so you don’t have to worry about your little one getting too far away from you.
  • There are two different size slides that accommodate pretty much any size and ability.
  • The ground is covered in rubberized matts that do a very good job of cushioning falls and there is no pesky bark/sand to get all over the place.
  • All of the structures are easy for toddlers to climb on.

The Bad:

  • The first immediate bummer I found was the parking. What little parking there is near the toddler park is shared with the public pool so parking can sometimes be hard to find during swimming season.
  • The size of the park could be a down side if there are a lot of people there. It could easily get crowded with just a couple families playing at once. Luckily there has not been that much competition when we have gone.
  • During certain parts of the day there is a lot of direct sun on the play structure so some surfaces can get a little hot.

Please feel free to add your opinions in the comments and let me know if this review was helpful. What park should I review next?

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First Camping Trip – Outdoors With A Toddler

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Mikey got to go on his first camping trip over 4th of July weekend and boy did he have fun. Not only was it his first camping trip, but it was also his first time on a boat and his first time fishing.  He got to play with the radio on Grandpa’s boat and touch a fish.

So I know you are itching to know how we survived camping with a toddler. It was definitely a little stressful at times but it was a lot easier than I expected (Mostly thanks to my brilliant wife). I think the main thing is to try to stick to their routine as much as possible.

“But how Newb Dad?!”

I’m glad you asked.

Bath Time

This is kinda a big deal in our house. Mikey gets a bath every night whether he needs one or not to help him unwind from the day. We didn’t want to break that tradition and he definitely needed a bath every day. We brought a large plastic tote like you can get from target after new years, and that was his bath tub. We warmed up water and filled the tote until it was the right level for bath time. If you have an issue with the water being too warm you can add cold water back in. Mikey actually enjoyed it a lot more than I expected. He had a lot of fun splashing around in his makeshift bath tub out in the wilderness.

Nap Time

Naps were a bit more difficult than bath time. Mikey had to take naps in our tent which can be hit and miss even for adults. The tent can get pretty hot during the day, especially if it is in the sun. We had an extra easy up that we moved to shade the tent during the warmest part of the day. We also opened the vents on the tent and it was actually pretty nice inside there. The main thing with this is to watch for signals from your little guy and adjust naps accordingly. We had to be flexible with when we put Mikey down to make sure he didn’t go down too early and he didn’t get over tired.

Food Time

I wasn’t quite sure how we were going to do meal time while camping without a high chair. I mean, I knew we would make it work but I just wasn’t sure what we would settle on. Then we found the most awesome amazing super stupendous invention ever. The Camping High Chair is like a folding camping chair and a high chair had a baby and painted it camo. It is awesome! And the best part is, you don’t have to put it away when you get home from camping. We keep this in our trunk so when we go out places, if we need a high chair for Mikey, we have our own. There are a lot of times when there are no usable high chairs at the establishment.  Seriously people, how hard is it to wipe down a high chair after you are done with it. Gross! With this high chair there was not much else we had to do special for meal times. We just plopped Mikey in his chair and put the food in front of him just like at home.

One last lesson I want to impart is: be prepared to constantly wash water cups and toys! We kept the rinsing tubs from dishes out all day so that we could rinse off toys and drink cups as they got thrown on the ground. It is not a matter of if this will happen, it is when… and how many times.

Let me know down below if you have any other super cool awesome camping hacks for toddlers. Be sure to share this post on the social medias if you enjoyed so other have a chance to read it as well. Thank you!

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